Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Organic Farms On The Rise - People Are Eating Healthier Than Ever - Be A Raw Vegan And BAN Genetically Modified Foods..Insecticides, Pesticides, Chemical Fertilisers, Growth Hormones And Antibiotics Are not Used In Organic Farming.

free organic food, ban genetically modified food, ban chemical pesticides

North America: Organic farming to soar in 2013

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Organic Farming
Organic farming is expected to increase revenue by 12.5 per cent to reach $617 million this year, having grown at a compound annual rate of 10 per cent since 2008.

Mr Shulman said the industry is quite niche so the large increase can be partially attributed to the fact it is growing from a low base.

"But that scope for growth is coming from a growing demand for organic produce, with people's incomes rising over the past few years and consumers looking to shop more ethically and sustainably," he said.
"People are willing to spend that's extra dollar or so on a purchase they're more morally comfortable with."

organic produce taste

Source: http://www.news.com.au/business/companies/five-industries-set-to-enjoy-big-revenue-increases-in-2013/story-fnda1bsz-1226555108751

The organic farming is gaining a nice foothold in America and are doing okay business-wise.

The Organic Production Survery conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows the amount of farmland dedicated to organic crops and livestock is still really small but growing fast.

It survey is the first widescale survey so there's not a lot to compare it to. But there are some telling numbers.

The survery said there are 14,540 farms that were USDA certified organic or exempt from certification because sales are less than $5,000 -- including 129 in Maryland. The number has doubled at least twice since 1990.

They farm 4.1 million acres of land in all 50 states, though California is home to 20 percent of the farms. That's up from about 1 million acres in 1990. (It's still only about a percent of all farmed crop and pasture land.)

In 2008, sales of organic products nationwide totaled $3.16 billion. Some $1.94 billion was spent on crops and $1.22 billion on livestock, poultry and their products.

Organic farms took in more in sales than conventional farms: An average of $217,675 verses a $134,807 average for all farms. But they also spent more on production: $171,978 on organic farms, compared with an average $109,359 on all farms.

Organic farming is largely local with about 44 percent of sales were made within 100 miles from the farm. Though, just 7 percent were direct to consumers at farmers' markets and other means. The rest went to wholesalers and retailers.

What about the future? More than 78 percent of the farms say they plan to keep up the organic farming and even increase production in coming years.

Source: http://www.chicagotribune.com/features/sns-green-certified-organic-farms,0,6467900.story
Learn More Here: http://ofrf.org/sites/ofrf.org/files/docs/pdf/HP-report-web.pdf

South America: Organic farming to soar in 2013

Pest control devices improves organic farming in South America
As staying fit and leading a healthy life has become the objective of humans today, different food sources are being taken into use so that it is easy for a person to maintain their health. Organic farming is getting intense with time as more people are getting cautious about their health. South America is taking a toll in organic farming with augment of technology. There are new products available in the market, which is helping the farmers of South America in preventing pests from harming the organic farms. As organic farmers in South America faced the problems of pests, LED powered pest control devised is now being taken into use for keeping the farms free from pests.

With advancement of technology, a new device has been created which will be solving the farming issues faced by the farmers. The LED powered device, which has been created by a Korean company with collaboration with the American government and research and development companies, will be solving the problem of organic farmers in South America who give their best to harvest some of the best organic crops. The companies which were involved in manufacturing this wonderful gadget stated that, it is one of the best technological wonders that would help the farmers in getting rid of insects and pests in a hassle free manner that destroy the hard work of the farmers.


How this new technology works

The working of these LED powered devices for pest control is easy and can be operated in a hassle free manner. Once this device is switched on, tunic wave lengths are emitted which repels the insects and pests. The sound, which is, erupts from the device puts a hindrance between the breeding patterns of the pests and insects. Another major feature that can be taken into use is that, it can be put into different color modes that will inhibit molds and restrain the use of pesticides, which affects the crops in various ways.

Another feature of this wonderful LED pest control device is that, it can be put up at any place of your choice to repel the insects and pests with ease. The makers of this device stated that, the LED lights that are being taken into use for making this device is more powerful than the incandescent lamps. In addition, they also stated that, farmers would be able to save on their electricity bills as well when they start using this wonderful gadget for pest control. The power of the LED lights can be controlled with ease depending on the situation and type of insects and pests, which you want to control.

The outcome of this wonderful device
Farmers in South America are happy and delighted to have this device, as now they will be able to save their harvest with ease. On contacting some of the farmers who used this wonderful LED powered device for pest control, they stated that, it is one of the best devices, which has been designed for keeping the pests and insects away from the crops. Offered at affordable rates, farmers of South America are taking use of this new technological wonder to ward off the insects and pests from their organic crops.


The expert opinion
Organic farming in South America has seen drastic changes with use of the pest control devices. As organic farming is promoted in South America, it has even proved beneficial for environmentalists and food suppliers involved in supplying organic food. In addition, the government is also taking into use different measures and steps to promote organic farming in South America so that people have the easy accesses to a healthy and fit life with use of organic food.

Australia: Organic farming to soar in 2013

by Dr John Paull

Australia: Organic farming to soar in 2013 
An analysis by IBIS World predicts that organic farming is one of the top five Australian “industries to fly” in 2013. The value of revenue from organic farming is predicted to grow by 12.5%, and to rise from AU$549 million in 2012, to AU$617 million in 2013 (€434 m to €488 m).

Of the five proposed high fliers, organic farming is forecast to grow slower than oil and gas production (15.9%), but faster than the other three high fliers: online education (10.5% growth), online shopping (9.1%) and apartment and townhouse construction (9.0%).

Karen Dobie, General Manager of IBISWorld (Australia), said that “Consumers are becoming increasingly eco and health conscious. This means they are more willing to pay a premium price to prevent environmental degradation caused by conventional farming methods and to ensure the products they consume are free from added chemicals and hormones”.

Food retailing is dominated in Australia by two supermarket chains which are both actively increasing their organic offering. Dobie stated that “Major retailers, such as Coles and Woolworths, continue to respond to this trend, increasing the convenience in which these foods are purchased”.

Australian incomes are predicted to rise by 3.4% in 2013, and Dobie sees this as an important factor driving up demand for organic products: “As Australian incomes rise, we are seeing consumers move away from conventionally farmed produce towards natural, chemical-free and hormone-free counterparts.”

The IBISWorld 2012 report on Organic Farming in Australia had already identified organic agriculture as “a blossoming industry” and proposed that "the industry will continue to grow strongly over the next five years” and predicting revenues to rise 10.3% per annum over that period.

Source: http://oneco.biofach.de/en/news/australia-organic-farming-to-soar-in-2013--focus--d3a01fe1-97a8-4dbc-b0b4-2e6cfa930bfa/

Sustainable agriculture programs are on the rise
More colleges are offering organic and sustainable agriculture degree programs.
Tue, Aug 16 2011 at 10:37 AM
Organic Farm
Photo: suzettesuzette/Flickr
More colleges across the country are offering students degree or certificate programs in organic and sustainable agriculture. There are likely two main reasons pushing the demand for these programs: the aging American farmer population and the increased demand for organic and sustainable products by American consumers. Just two years ago Fast Company magazine named farming as the hottest green job for this decade and the recent increase in college programs is helping to support this claim.
Shannon Dininny looks at this trend in her article for the Associated Press, College organic, sustainability programs growing. For example, Washington State University is expanding their programming and now offers an organic agriculture certificate online. This allows students from around the country to obtain a solid understanding of organic agriculture without needing to travel to Pullman, Washington for in-person classes.
Students in organic and sustainable agriculture programs will have a variety of job opportunities available to them upon graduation, even positions in conventional farming operations. Roger Pepperl with Stemilt Growers comments on one benefit of sustainable agriculture training to conventional farms; the students “have new ideas about methods for handling pests, fungus and weeds that use fewer chemicals, making them environmentally preferable and potentially less expensive.”
While organic and sustainable farming degree programs are on the rise, there is also an overall increase in the number of farmers pursuing a formal college education. According to Dinniny’s article, approximately 25 percent of today’s farmers hold a bachelor’s degree with 70 percent having completed some college coursework. In 1965, only 4 percent of farmers and ranchers had completed a college degree program.
To learn more about trends in organic and sustainable agriculture, visit the Organic Farming Research Foundation website.

Source: http://www.mnn.com/money/sustainable-business-practices/blogs/sustainable-agriculture-programs-are-on-the-rise

Best Business To Start In 2013 : Organic Farming

If you’re interested in organic farming, you’ve probably heard of EcoFarm. The West Coast’s largest conference on the subject draws 1,500 people to the foggy, salty-aired city of Monterey, CA, every January.
What began as a gathering of scrappy outsiders over 30 years ago has grown to accommodate not only organic practitioners, but a range of farm and food educators, organizers, and urban farmers. Fresh-faced young ranchers wax poetic about the latest soil science while silver-haired veterans dole out hard-earned wisdom and share battle scars. Attendees taste local biodynamic wine, watch the latest ag documentaries, and swap heirloom seeds. But what happens at EcoFarm does not stay at EcoFarm. On the contrary, the three-day event often plays a role in shaping the national sustainable farming dialogue.

After all, California still leads the nation in certified organic cropland, with over 430,000 acres, and a great deal of that land—over 40 percent—is dedicated to fruit and vegetable production. And while less than one percent of the total farmland in the U.S. is home to organic crops, that number is projected to rise.
Perhaps nowhere was this relationship between the largest produce state and the rest of the farming nation clearer than on a panel called Our Allies Are Now in California Ag Government: How Can We Help Them Help Us?

One surprising ally of the organic farming community on the panel was Brian Leahy, the director of the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR). A former organic farmer, Leahy took the job last year, just as the popular fumigant methyl bromide was being phased out of use in the state because of its link to ozone depletion, and conventional strawberry growers were demanding a replacement. Until last March, it looked like the state was going to approve the ultra-toxic fumigant methyl iodide for wide-scale use. But then—much to the relief of environmentalists and farmworkers—the pesticide was taken off the market.
In addition to sterilizing soil, fumigants also travel through the air and have been shown to have a direct impact on the health of those in surrounding farm communities. These gaseous pesticides are also seen as key to growing strawberries, one of the biggest cash crops in the state. And of course, those berries don’t stay in California; the Golden State grows 80 percent of the nation’s strawberries, making the use of fumigants a national issue.

Leahy calls fumigants his “biggest challenge.” On the panel he pointed to a half-million-dollar, three-year research project he’s commissioned to try out growing the berries in alternative mediums (think coconut fiber) as a way to control pests, and other efforts to engage scientists and universities in the challenge. But Leahy also acknowledged the fact that alternative methods still add significant costs for growers. “It’s cheaper for farmers to apply fumigants than it is for them to get their soil tested to understand what’s wrong and how to manage it,” he said.

In the debate over pesticide use, conventional farmers often overestimate their dependence on such chemicals. Panelist Richard Rominger, the current senior agriculture advisor to California Governor Jerry Brown, put it best when recalling the phasing out of another fumigant that was commonly used in vineyards during the 1980s. “Farmers said, if we took it off the market, the industry would die. But we took it off the market and the industry survived.”

Of course, the big picture of agriculture has changed since the 1980s. And the real challenge, as Leahy sees it, is keeping strawberry farming from moving out of the country. “There are 70,000 jobs in the California strawberry industry. We don’t want to see it move offshore to Mexico,” said Leahy.

Rominger is pushing to bring a wider array of less-toxic organic pesticides to the market, but he and Leahy both acknowledged that it takes time (often two to three years) to get a new product—even something as benign-seeming as garlic oil—through the state’s regulatory agencies. And it can take even longer to phase out an entrenched pesticide. As Leahy put it, “It’s easier to kill a vampire than a pesticide these days.”
On the bright side, Leahy did say that he was “seeing a change in attitudes” among conventional strawberry farmers, who face pressure not only from environmentalists but from consumers, who expect to pay around $2 for a basket of these delicate, disease-prone berries.

That’s where Sandra Schubert, undersecretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, and the third panelist present that day, chimed in. While addressing the impact California agriculture has on the rest of the country, she called on all the state’s farmers—organic and conventional—to speak with “one voice” in the national agriculture debate, which is often dominated by large commodity (corn, wheat, soy, etc.) farms. Such an approach from fruit and produce farmers would help convince lawmakers to make more waves on a national level, she said.

As Schubert pointed out, Californians have very little voice on the federal agriculture committees, which shape national farm policy such as the farm bill (the giant federal legislation that shapes how and where tax dollars are spent). And she’s right: While there are a few Californians among the Midwestern and Southern representatives on the House Agriculture Committee, the Senate Agriculture Committee has not one member from California.
Of course, as Schubert sees it, it’s probably not a coincidence that officials from the state that hosts this notorious gathering of organic-food advocates would not play well with politicians representing regions dominated by chemical-intensive, industrial-scale agriculture. As she put it: “Every time you are out in D.C., you hear somebody say, ‘We can’t do that.’ Then you hear, ‘Well, they do it in California.’ ”

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Twilight Greenaway is an Oakland-based freelancer who has been writing and editing for the web since 2000. Her articles about food and farming have appeared in The New York Times, the Bay Citizen, Smithsonian.com, Civil Eats, and on Grist, where she served as the food editor from 2011-2012. @twyspy | TakePart.com

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